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Govt extends standardisation deadline

NAIROBI, September 1 – The government has extended the deadline for local manufacturers to acquire the standardisation mark on their products, from October 2008 to March next year.

This is part of resolutions arrived at by a committee formed to work out how to implement the mark, which was initially expected to come into force on July 1 this year.

The deadline was however pushed to October to enable them to comply, but they once again failed to agree on its execution, prompting the formation of the 10-member committee.

The team also agreed that the manufacturers have until October 1 to register for the quality mark.

Industrialisation Minister Henry Kosgey told a media briefing on Monday that the extension would give manufacturers enough time to clear their stocks.

He said companies would however be required to pay an annual flat rate of Sh20, 000 as the initial payment for the factory, and a varying amount for each product they manufacture.

Companies producing less than ten commodities would be required to pay Sh7, 500 per product per year, while those manufacturing ten or more will pay Sh5, 000 per product per annum.

At a press conference, Kosgey has also directed the Kenya Bureau of Standards to convene a Sectoral Technical Committee to classify soft drinks and report back to the committee.

KEBS has also been asked to disseminate the message to all stakeholders, including consumers and supermarkets, to ensure the deadlines are adhered to.

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He assured that Kenyan goods would still be able to enter the other East African Community states like Tanzania and Uganda, which have already implemented the mark.

The Minister said that the EAC ministry and other agencies would be required to sensitise the neighbouring countries on the standardisation mark.

Kosgey said imported goods that impact on consumers’ health and safety would also be required to bear the mark.

The Imports Standardisation Mark (ISM) shall be applied on food, electrical products and toys, and would be effected according to the Pre-export Verification of Conformity (PVOC) program. 

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